Distributor:  Collective Eye
Length:  79 minutes
Date:  2011
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English / English subtitles
Color/BW:  Color
Closed captioning available
Interactive transcript available
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From Nothing, Something

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Profiles creative thinkers across a variety of disciplines to find the common techniques, habits and neuroses that lead to breakthrough ideas.

From Nothing, Something

FROM NOTHING, SOMETHING profiles creative thinkers across a variety of disciplines to find the common techniques, habits and neuroses that lead to breakthrough ideas. This is an inspiring, intimate, often funny look at the creative process — straight from the brains of some of culture’s most unique and accomplished talents. The film draws a line from a-to-b, charting the journey of an idea from "fanciful notion" to "real world actuality."

"Waves away the magic dust around inspiration and presents the development of successful ideas as a combination of chance, timing and dedicated hard work. Inspiring." —The Rocker "FROM NOTHING, SOMETHING is an interesting movie because it has to visualize a very interior, cerebral thing: the creative process. The fact that it pulls this off is the greatest signifier of its success." —Days of Docs "Engaging. Insightful. One leaves the film not only with more ideas as to how the creative process works, but inspired and elated... One of the best films of the year." —Kriofske Mix "We discover surprising commonalities among these talents. Beautifully shot. Fascinating." —Arts Fuse (Best of the Fest, IFFBoston Recap) "Inspiring and motivating." —Fast Company "Fascinating. A unique film. Executed with passion and precision." —The Lonely Reviewer "A film that challenges us to awaken our senses." —Les Meconnus, Montreal "What goes on insides the heads of uber-creative people? This stimulation, fast-paced doc reveals the zany personalities of eccentric geniuses." —Arts & Opinion "4/5 stars. Illuminating and often mesmerizing." —The Film Yap "Intelligent and entertaining. Few filmmakers succeed in approaching the filmmaking journey through the lenses of both intellect and inspirating, but Cawley proves to be the exception. I found myself completely and utterly captivated." —theindependentcritic.com "Immediately after the movie ended...I was struck with the same inspiring urges felt by the film's subjects." —Filmbalaya "Engrossing and entertaining. Highly recommended." —Blogging Ashland "Eye-opening. Powerful." —Siskiyou "Fascinating. A well-made movie about a fun topic." —Cinedraft "Offers refreshing insight on many industries, disregarding stereotypes to break down what 'being creative' truly means. FROM NOTHING, SOMETHING connected on a much deeper level than I thought possible." —The Sneaky Sneak "Unique. Inspiring. Reveals a level of candidness you could never find in a million years with big-budgeted, star-laden films of similar anatomy." —ATOD Magazine "Fascinating. I dare you to watch this movie and not get inspired." —Perspective Blog


Official Film Festival Selection - Independent Film Festival Boston, Montreal World, New Orleans, Heartland, Virginia, Ashland, Cleveland, Newport Beach, San Francisco Frozen Film Festival, Sound Unseen. Design Festivals - Architecture & Design Film Festival/NY, Design Indaba, Cape Town, Architecture & Design Film Festival/Denver (Opening Night Film), Resene Architecture & Design Film Festival/New Zealand (Opening Night Film), Seattle Design Festival, Portland Design Festival (Opening Night Film), Milan Design Film Fest (Opening Night Film), Bangkok Design Festival


Main credits

Cawley, Tim (Director)
Cawley, Tim (Producer)
Appleton, Amy (Producer)
Buckley, Jim (Producer)

Other credits

Director of photography, Geoff McAuliffe; camera, Henrique Ghersi; editor, Kat Baker; original music by Conan Skyrme.

Distributor credits

Amy Appleton, Jim Buckley

Amy Appleton, Jim Buckley
Tim Cawley

Docuseek2 subjects

Visual Arts

Distributor subjects



Arts; design; comedy; visual effects; medical fields; "From Nothing, Something "; creativity;

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